Do you worry about the environmental impact of plastic? I know I do. As a planet, we're producing more and more waste every day, which means that our oceans and landfills are piling up with trash. Even though recycling has helped reduce some of this problem, there's still plenty of waste that's ending up in places it shouldn't be. That's why I'm always looking for ways to decrease my own personal impact on the environment—and one way many people are doing this is by switching over to biodegradable products like bags made from cornstarch or PLA (polylactic acid). These alternatives seem like they'd be better for the environment because they break down more quickly than regular plastic bags or containers do, but before you go swapping out all your conventional items with ones made from plants instead:
PLA is a type of plastic made from cornstarch. It's compostable, but not biodegradable.
It's often used in food packaging and containers because it can be recycled in municipal solid waste systems. PLA has been shown to have better performance than traditional fossil fuel plastics when exposed to heat, light and oxygen over time.
PLA is more expensive than regular plastic; however, if you care about the environment then this may be worth paying extra for as an alternative to fossil fuel plastics that harm our planet for thousands of years after being discarded into landfills or oceans.
Biodegradable plastic is made from plants, and it can be composted. However, biodegradability in this context refers to the ability of microorganisms or other living organisms to break down a material into simpler forms of matter through biological processes such as decay or digestion. Biodegradation does not mean that all parts of the material will be recovered for reuse; only those which are biodegradable will be recovered by nature over time.
The use of plastic alternatives such as PLA and sugarcane plastic may reduce the amount of waste in the oceans and landfills. PLA is a biodegradable plastic made from cornstarch, which can be found in many grocery stores. It has many advantages over traditional plastics: it's compostable, biodegradable and it does not contain harmful chemicals like BPA (bisphenol A). However, there are some disadvantages to PLA as well. This type of plastic takes longer than other types of bioplastics to break down in landfills because it has low water content; this means that more time will pass before your product fully disintegrates into small pieces within its container or landfill site.
Another alternative material for making disposable cups is sugarcane-based polyethylene terephthalate (PET). Sugar cane-based PET has been proven effective at reducing harmful greenhouse gas emissions while contributing less carbon dioxide into our atmosphere compared with standard petroleum-based PETs used today
Bioplastics are more expensive than non-biodegradable plastics.
PLA is more expensive than cornstarch or sugarcane plastic, which can be used to make containers and bottles for food and drink products. Paper, glass, aluminum and other materials are also cheaper than PLA because they don't require any processing before use; you just buy them in bulk and use them as-is!
PLA is biodegradable, but it's not compostable. It's made from cornstarch or sugarcane and it's a renewable resource. PLA is more expensive than plastic made from fossil fuels and doesn't break down as quickly in landfills, so it's not as good for the environment as we'd like to think it is.
Biodegradable plastic is made from plant-based materials that can be broken down by microorganisms. This means that it will not stay in the environment for long and does not pose a threat to marine life or other living organisms. However, biodegradable plastics are still not 100% natural because they are made with non-renewable resources (oil). In addition to this, some people may have concerns about whether these products are safe for human consumption because they contain additives used during their production process.
Biodegradable plastic is biodegradable, but that doesn't mean it's a good alternative to regular plastic. While biodegradable plastics are designed to break down in the environment, they can still release harmful chemicals into soil and water when they do so--and there's no guarantee that these chemicals will be broken down by microorganisms in the environment before they cause harm. In fact, some studies have shown that some types of biodegradable plastics actually leach more toxic substances than conventional petroleum-based plastics do!
Biodegradable plastics aren't necessarily better for the environment than conventional ones either: because these products are less likely to end up in landfills where they can take decades or even centuries (or longer) before breaking down completely into carbon dioxide gas and water vapor through bacterial fermentation processes inside anaerobic environments like sealed landfills; instead they end up littering our oceans where they become part of what we call "marine debris" (i.e., trash floating around on top off our oceans).
While bioplastics are available on the market today, they're still relatively new and more research is needed to determine their environmental benefits. Bioplastics are made from renewable resources like corn or sugarcane, but there's no guarantee that these products will decompose in a landfill or compost pile. In fact, some biodegradable plastics can take up to 1,000 years to break down! This means they could sit in landfills for centuries before they completely degrade--and that doesn't sound like an environmentally friendly solution to me!
When considering whether or not you should purchase products made with biodegradable materials, ask yourself: What impact might this have on my health? How much energy was used during production (both at the beginning stages when growing crops and later stages when manufacturing)? What else could we do with all those plants instead of turning them into plastic bags?
The FDA does not regulate bioplastics. The agency has not evaluated whether or not these products are toxic to humans when ingested, and it's likely that they will never do so. This is because the FDA does not consider food contact materials like cutlery and straws to be part of the "food" category--they're regulated under a different set of rules.
The U.S.-based Biodegradable Products Institute (BPI) certifies biodegradable plastics as meeting various standards, including those set by ASTM International (formerly known as American Society for Testing and Materials). BPI's certification program requires that any product bearing its logo must meet certain criteria in order to qualify:
While bioplastics may biodegrade faster than traditional plastics, they still release toxins into the environment during this process.
Biodegradable plastic is not 100% biodegradable and therefore does not completely break down into water and carbon dioxide. Instead, it breaks down into smaller pieces that take longer to decompose because they are more difficult for microorganisms to digest. These tiny particles can then enter waterways and leach into soil, where they accumulate over time or become part of humans' diets through food sources such as fish or vegetables grown in contaminated soil.
Biodegradable plastics are a great alternative to traditional plastics, but they're not perfect. They're expensive and may require special treatment in landfills. If you're looking for an environmentally friendly option, consider using sustainable materials like bamboo or cotton instead of plastic products altogether.